Blogging Basics

Why Blogging is Essential for your Business

Most business owners don't dedicate time to SEO (aka Search Engine Optimization).


Understanding SEO isn’t easy, and Google is constantly changing the algorithms and policies. Seems like every time SEO practitioners get a handle on things, the rules change, and they’re all left wondering what they’re doing wrong and what they might possibly be doing right

One thing that will always benefit your SEO efforts is blogging. Blogging is beneficial to your business for millions of reasons including building trust with your clients and potential clients, positioning yourself as an industry expert, and simply sharing news with your company’s followers. Blogging can only help you if you know how to blog properly. Here are 8 reasons blogging boosts your SEO:

1. FRESH CONTENT: Search engines love fresh, original content. Your website most likely does not change very often. That’s why you need to keep an active blog filled with new and relevant information. Ideally, you should be posting at least a 300-500 word blog each week. When customers type in search phrases like "social media management for my business”, search engines will pull the newest and most relevant content each time a search is performed. If your site hasn’t been updated with new information in a while, you can bet someone else’s will rank higher than yours in the results. That is where a blog comes in handy.

By blogging, you build relationships with your readers, position yourself as an expert in the field, and perhaps most importantly, provide new content for Google to index.

2. KEYWORDS: Keywords have gone from being important for SEO to being obsolete. Their importance to search engine results is disputed amongst SEO experts. In fact, this is another aspect of SEO you can do poorly and end up punished for. Blog posts used to consist of the same keywords over and over again regardless of their relevance to the post itself. Now you must make sure you choose unique keywords that will lead searchers to your site but not so unique that no one thinks to use them. If you choose words that are used too often, you won’t get much benefit out of them. You may find the Google Keyword Tool to be helpful.

Your best bet with keywords and search terms is to use the keywords and phrases that people may use when searching. Don't spend too much time placing keywords or including words a certain number of times. Concentrate on answering questions. If you know your customers would want to know about "why blogging would work for their business”, :) just write a blog post answering the questions. The keywords will fall into place naturally!

3. BACKLINKING: Backlinking is part of the algorithm Google uses to determine the quality of your content. If other companies are linking to your content, then it must be good, right? Sort of. If you do this too much, you will also be penalized. The backlinks need to come from reliable and relevant sources.

You can benefit from being linked and linking to others, but there are some things to keep in mind. First, doing things organically is always the best option. If you pay to be linked on another website, you could end up being penalized. Next, work with reputable sites that fit your blog’s niche. If you sell sneakers, it would make sense for a fitness company to link to your content. When links to your blog appear on sites that have nothing to do with your company, you’ll get another flag from Google. Finally, follow these same rules for any links you use on your own site.

4. IMAGES AND VIDEOS: Including images and videos in your blog provides search engines one more chance to find you. Any images or videos should be titled with relevant search terms or keywords. You should never be uploading a file titled IMG_1234 or MOV_1234 or something similar. Name them with keywords!! Just like keywords, your photos and videos should be relevant to the content within your blog. If you are posting your video to YouTube and then linking to it, be sure to tag it properly so that it can be indexed on its own.

5. GUEST BLOGGING: If you work with writers who are well-known experts in their industries, their popularity can only help you. Follow Google’s quality guidelines, and guest blogs will boost your search engine rankings.

6. SOCIAL MEDIA: You probably already know that search engines also pay attention to your social media efforts. If you post blogs to your social media accounts, you give search engines one more way to find your company.

7. SHARE-WORTHY CONTENT: When your blogs are visited, commented on, and shared, they move up in search rankings. The only way to make sure your blog becomes popular is to create unique content, provide answers for visitors, and then share your blogs wherever you can.

8. INDEXED PAGES: Each blog post counts as a new page on your website. As I mentioned above, Google loves fresh content. Websites that include a blog will see up to 55% more traffic than those that do not blog. The reason for this is the indexed pages. Keep in mind that for Google to index your blog pages, you must include at least 300 words.

Don’t let the thought of producing original content every week overwhelm you. Simply take a systematic and organized approach. Start with topics that answer questions your potential customers have.

Content Calendar For Blogging

There are many tools out there to help make blogging easier, but the best one is a detailed content calendar.

Simply put, a calendar will keep you from getting overwhelmed with all the work involved in blogging. Throwing content on to your blog without a plan is like driving in a foreign city with no map.

Ask yourself:

  • Who am I trying to reach?
  • What will make the most impact with my audience?
  • Who will write this post?
  • How will I get my content in front of the people I am trying to reach?

The pressure to get your weekly blog posts finalized can be intimidating. Most of the time, writer's block wins the battle, and you end up posting nothing at all. Planning posts a week or two in advance will help give you enough time to write them and keep you excited about creating them as well. Each calendar will be different depending on you and your company's goals, but here are some things to consider including.


  1. National & Federal Holidays/Anniversaries: When your company was founded, birthdays, etc.
  2. Holidays related to your industry: For example, someone in the healthcare industry would want to make note that March is National Nutrition Month.
  3. Due Dates and Publish Dates: Just as an example, if you are blogging each week, you should have your blog posts finalized by Mondays and published by Wednesdays.
  4. Assets: Next to your due dates, list what type of content you will be posting such as photos, video, or blog posts.
  5. Targeted Keywords: Since this is your content calendar, the keywords you are trying to target should be kept in a notes section so that you remember to use them in your blogs and social media posts.
  6. Insights and Goals: Include a date each month to measure the effectiveness of your posts.

At times there will be topics in the news or something trending that is related to your business, so you'll need to reschedule your content around that. The calendar is not set in stone but simply acts as a guide for you.

I use a Google Docs spreadsheet as my calendar. That way I can sync it to my phone and share it with others if needed. There are plenty of templates out there as well to help get you started.

How to Write Effective Blog Content

You can spend hours researching and writing fantastic blog posts that are on topic for your audience, but without a strategy for how to consistently produce and market your content, your posts won't benefit your business. First, let's focus on the elements needed for your content and then some tactics for reaching the digital marketplace.

MAKE YOUR CONTENT EASY TO SCAN: The majority of people reading content online are looking for solutions. Provide the most important information first. This way if they glance at the first paragraph they can determine if the post is giving them what they’re looking for.

USE FORMATTING TO DIRECT THE READERS’ EYE: If your blog post is too text heavy, you will lose the attention of your readers. You should use headings, subheadings, bold text, bullets, and numbered lists to keep your text easy to scan and to direct the readers' eye through you content.

KNOW YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE: One of the most important parts of blogging is to know your target audience. Be aware of their problems and concerns so that you can provide the solutions that they want. Research forums and blogs in your niche for discussions and questions; then draft an appropriate solution based on their needs.

PROVIDE ACTIONABLE CONTENT: Offer tips and resources your readers can immediately use to solve current or future problems on their own.

GET TO THE POINT: Your blog post should be as long as it needs to be to get your point across. If your solution requires a lengthy explanation, consider writing it as a series. Keep your explanations as simple as possible and avoid using jargon. 

AVOID THE SALES PITCH: Self-promotion will create distrust and likely turn your readers away. Sales will come if you keep your blog posts focused on providing solutions to your readers by giving them enough information to take action.

EXECUTE YOUR STRATEGY AND MEASURE YOUR SUCCESS: Stick to your calendar to stay on track, measure the results with analytics and insights, and make adjustments when necessary. 

By following these tips for producing effective content and posting to your blog consistently, you'll see how beneficial a blog can be for your business.

A Guide to Blog Post Length

Blogging is essential to your business, so do whatever you can to blog effectively. Part of drafting the perfect blog is making sure it is the right length.

There are many theories about how long blog posts should be, but it honestly all depends on your business and your goals. In short the answer is: Your blog post should be as long as you need it to be.

That probably isn't the helpful answer you were hoping for, but your blog posts should be as long as they need to be to serve their purpose. Can your blog post provide your readers the information they need in 300 words? Great. Stop writing. No more words needed. If 300 isn't enough to get a clear point across, you're not done. Keep writing.

Depending on your goals, there are different blog lengths that will work well for you.

IF YOU WANT MORE TRAFFIC FROM SEARCH ENGINGES (GOOGLE, BING, YAHOO, ETC.): Search engines like Google prefer longer and more research based/informative posts. Aim for anywhere between 1,500 to 2,000 words, but you need to have at least 300 minimum.

IF YOU WANT MORE SOCIAL MEDIA SHARES: Having your content shared on social media is a great way to gain exposure for your business. How many social shares you earn is influenced by several things including your topic, the quality of the posts, and the size of your audience.

If the post is too short, people may not find it informative enough to pass along on their social networks. To encourage social shares, try for a blog post between 600-1,000 words.

IF YOU WANT MORE COMMENTS ON YOUR BLOGS: If you want to encourage people to comment on your blog posts, the shorter the better. Focus the post on asking your audience questions to generate a discussion. Try to keep your post under 300 words and make it clear you want to start a discussion so that people will comment.

Drafting short, discussion-based posts is very good for building an audience, but short posts are not beneficial for SEO. So make sure to mix up your post lengths.


That really just depends on the goals for your blog. Your word choices are typically more important than your word count, but you can always split your blog into a series if you have a lot to say about a certain topic! Do your best to vary the length of your blog posts to properly serve your audience.

Blogging Frequency

There are many resources out there talking about how to blog effectively. Most experts are speaking from their personal experience with clients or with their own business. The answer you'll find across the board is that you should be posting to your blog daily. But if you’re a small business owner, that is likely not possible. So, here's my advice:

POST AT LEAST ONCE A WEEK: While daily content can give your blog a great boost for SEO, it can also hurt you if you don't keep publishing at the same frequency. That's why once a week is a more reasonable option; however, anything less than that will make it hard for you to keep your readers’ interest.

Unless you have someone whose job is to write daily blog posts, or you plan to supplement original content with guest bloggers or reposts, a daily schedule isn't realistic. After all, you've got a business to run.

UNDERSTAND THE IMPORTANCE OF BLOGGING FREQUENCY: When you regularly update your blog with well-written and engaging posts, you are positioning yourself for more visits to your site. According to data from Hubspot:

  • Companies that post to their blog 3-5 times a month, or about once a week, have twice as much traffic as companies that don't.
  • Companies that post to their blog 15+ posts per month see more than five times the traffic of companies that don't post to their blog.
  • Small businesses see the most significant results in their traffic when they update their blogs more often.

SET A REALISTIC SCHEDULE AND BE CONSISTENT: If you want your to blog to grow your business, you need to establish yourself as an expert. To do this you need to consistently push out great content. Once a week is the minimum; if you can post more often, then you should! Pick a schedule that you can manage and make the time for it. (Most blogs offer the ability to schedule posts in advance, so you can always stay ahead of the game if you're having a particularly great writing day.)

TELL YOUR READERS WHEN THEY'LL HEAR FROM YOU AGAIN: If you want to make sure your readers stick with you, let them know when to expect another post from you. This will act like a contract between you and your reader. They'll know when to expect new updates, and you'll feel that much more committed to your blogging schedule.

The main thing is to make sure that all of your blog posts are useful and relevant to your readers so they will keep coming back each time you post!

Getting Readers to Subscribe to Your Blog

If you want to get readers to subscribe to your blog, market it properly.

ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO SUBSCRIBE TO YOUR BLOG: It might seem like common sense, but remind people that they can subscribe to your blog. With each blog post you write, emphasize to your readers that they should subscribe to make sure they don't miss your posts moving forward. In addition, make it very easy for readers to subscribe. Put a subscription box at the top and bottom of your blog page and include a subscription link within each blog post.

Keep in mind that there are two ways readers can subscribe to your blog--via email or via RSS. Make it clear to them which type of subscription they are getting with the link you post or the box they are using to sign up.

WAYS TO ENCOURAGE SUBSCRIPTION: Encouraging readers to subscribe to your blog might not be enough to call them to action. They need to know what they'll be getting from your blog and if it is worth their time to read all of your posts. If you have impressive blog traffic or subscription numbers, consider showcasing those. Something as simple as "Join the 2,000 people who already subscribe!" will help you convert readers to subscribers.

Another great way to incentivize blog subscription is through free offers/downloads. Offer a little something extra for new subscribers (like an ebook or a phone consult).

You should also create a blog subscription landing page. That way you can send people directly from social media sites or advertisements to the action you want them to take. Make sure to include an opt-in on your subscription page and explain how you will be using their emails since everyone is wary of spam!

MARKET YOUR BLOG: Before you have a chance at increasing your number of subscribers, you have to entice potential readers through marketing. In addition to promoting your blogs through social media and calls to action on advertisements, you should be utilizing email marketing. Email marketing is a great and effective way to reach your target audience. (Make sure to subscribe to my blog for weekly video tips from yours truly!)

Thank You!

Digital Marketing is always changing as are the best techniques to succeed within the marketplace.

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